Niadia Murad

Escaped ISIS Sex Slave Publishes New Book About Her Survival Story

Picture this: you’re taken from your home, from everything that’s familiar and safe to you, and brought somewhere else by strange dangerous people. How would you feel? Or if your family was separated and sent off in different directions, unsure if you’ll ever see them again, would you keep faith and stay strong for them? Nadia Murad went through all of this and more. Now she’s a Nobel Peace Prize Nominee.

 

Murad

Image Via New York Post

 

It was in August 2014 when a twenty-one year old Murad woke to something alarming while asleep with her brothers and sisters on the roof of her small house due to the heat. ISIS had arrived in her small farming village, Kocho, after a two week siege and ordered everyone to get in trucks to be taken to a nearby schoolyard. It was there that Murad, the youngest of eleven siblings, was separated from her brothers, sisters, and mother. Murad and her fellow villagers, of Yazidi belief, were seen as evil to ISIS for worshipping a peacock deity in their 6,000 year old faith. The goal of Isis was then to convert everyone to Islam.

 

Murad Captors

Image Via New York Post

 

However, she knew once she was alone on a bus with other women her age and an ISIS guard repeatedly grabbed her breast and put cigarettes out on her skin that her life would take a dark and horrific turn. “You are an infidel, a sabiyya and you belong to the Islamic State now, so get used to it,” Murad says the soldier said to her. A sabiyya was a sex slave often given to soldiers and commanders as gifts or incentives, mere property. The torture soon began as she fell to the hands of an ISIS judge named Hajji Salman.

 

Murad and Amal

Amal Clooney and Nadia Murad | Image Via Digital News Agency

 

Rape, torture, and beating were a daily routine for Murad. Her first attempt to escape was foiled and resulted in terrible punishment. Her faith and hope was fading with each day she was enslaved, apart from her family. Then her captor made one mistake that gave Nadia a chance: he left without locking the door. It was now or never, she thought, as she put on the traditional Muslim women’s clothes to blend in and pushed her way out the door. After a long trek and some help she is forever grateful for, Murad made it safely back to a refugee camp where she reunited with two of her brothers and eventually two of her sisters. Her mother was executed. Her nephew was being brainwashed by ISIS. It was just over a year after escape that she made it to America and was asked to speak at the United Nations by an advocacy group.

 

Murad Book

Image Via New York Post

 

She stood up and told her story to every world leader, with George Clooney’s wife, Amal Clooney, representing her and thousands of other Yazidi victims. “I think there was a reason God helped me escape…Every time I tell my story, I feel that I am taking some power away from the terrorists.” Murad’s book The Last Girl: My Story of Captivity, and My Fight Against the Islamic State is out now.

 

This is a story worth remembering and a story worth fighting for. May we all be as strong as Nadia Murad.

 

Feature Image Via Daily Mirror